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College DT Kyle Smith suffers horrific injuries while making Bloomin’ Onion

Deep-fried-onionWe have spent a lot of time over the years here at LBS poking fun at athletes who suffer embarrassing injuries off the field, but there is nothing funny about the horrifying incident sophomore defensive tackle Kyle Smith experienced last month. Smith, who plays at NAIA Carroll College in Montana, suffered serious burns while attempting to deep fry an onion.

Smith’s girlfriend, Christie Fredericks, shared the disturbing story with the Casper Star-Tribune earlier this week. She said it all started when the oil on the stove began to smoke.

“Kyle didn’t want the smoke alarms to go off so he grabbed the pot off the stove and was taking it outside,” Fredericks explained. “The next thing I know the lid popped and the oil overflowed. Kyle slipped on the oil and it burned him.

“By that time the house was starting to fill with smoke and Kyle was just screaming at me and my daughter to get out of the house.”

Fredericks said she then took her 2-year-old daughter to the garage and waited for Smith when she heard him yell out, “Call 911…my feet are burnt off.”

“When I finally saw him his pants were melted and he was army crawling to the door,” she recalled. “It was pretty traumatic.”

Paramedics arrived and stabilized Smith before he was taken to the emergency room and later air-lifted to the University of Utah Burn Center. His father, Mitch Smith, said Kyle is burned on 20 percent of his body and that his arms look good but his legs will take a while to heal. He underwent skin graft surgery last Friday, with doctors taking skin from his thighs to replace the skin he lost on his feet, toes, shins and calves.

Doctors estimate that Smith will be in a bed at the burn center for about another month. He won’t be able to run again for four months and probably cannot begin working out for another six, meaning he will likely miss the upcoming football season. Here’s hoping he has a full and speedy recovery.

H/T Deadspin

Texas Rangers’ Jeff Baker hurt thumb on high-five

Jeff Baker RangersTexas Rangers utility man Jeff Baker did not play on Friday because he was unable to grab a bat after spraining his thumb receiving a high-five from a teammate on Thursday. Seriously.

Baker has been Mr. Versatile for the Rangers this season, starting games at both corner infield and outfield spots, as well as second base and DH. He is hitting .317 with nine home runs, and he has been particularly effective against lefties. Baker is batting .386 with eight of his homers coming off lefties, while he is hitting just .237 against right-handed pitchers.

Baker told reporters that his thumb was injured by a teammate who gave him an enthusiastic high-five before Thursday’s game against Toronto.

“I was giving my teammate a high five and the teammate was a little overexcited for whatever reason and bent my thumb back from my hand to my wrist,” Baker said, via FOX Sports Southwest. “I’m not too happy about it.”

Baker likely would have been in the lineup on Friday against lefty Mark Buehrle if not for the sprained thumb.

The Rangers already have Ian Kinsler and Mitch Moreland on the disabled list, so the last thing they needed was to lose one of their guys to a high-five. Actually, losing a guy to a high-five is the last thing anyone needs.

Nationals P Ryan Mattheus broke his hand punching a locker

Ryan-Mattheus-NationalsThe Washington Nationals are struggling with depth right now as a result of several injuries. There is little that can be done to prevent players from suffering injuries in practice or during a game. However, self-inflicted injuries like the one Nationals reliever Ryan Mattheus suffered on Sunday can easily be avoided.

According to the Washington Post, the Nats’ setup man broke his hand when he punched a locker after giving up five earned runs in one inning against the San Diego Padres. Mattheus’ hand reportedly did not swell up initially so he did not reveal the injury to the team. On Monday, pain and swelling forced him to come clean.

“I was pretty upset, and I let my emotions get the best of me,” he said. “I hit my locker, and unfortunately I injured myself. It’s pretty embarrassing. It’s a tough one to swallow. I feel like I let the other 25 guys down on this team. I let the whole Washington Nationals organization down doing something stupid.”

Washington starting pitcher Ross Detwiler came out of the game with an injury on Monday, which forced manager Davey Johnson to use long relievers Zach Duke and Craig Stammen in his place. Since Mattheus kept his injury a secret until Monday, the team was unable to call someone up before the game to replace him, leaving them with a depleted bullpen.

“It was tough losing Mattheus,” Johnson said. “Unfortunately, he didn’t tell anybody that he broke his hand the night before. Unfortunately, we weren’t able to have anybody here to help us out. He felt real bad about it, but I wish he had said something about what he did.”

Mattheus is not the first nor the second ballplayer to injure himself by letting his frustrations boil over, and he now understands the type of embarrassment that comes along with it.

“That’s what’s so embarrassing about it,” he said. “It’s absolutely something I can control. It’s not like I hurt myself out on the field. I got to do a better job of that.”

Moral of the story: don’t hide your injuries. I’m sure Mattheus was hoping his hand was fine and he wouldn’t have to tell the team that he hurt it by punching a metal locker, but it ended up costing the team even more than it had to.

H/T SI Hot Clicks

Victor Martinez needs eight stitches after cutting thumb on a bat rack

Victor-Martinez-TigersThe Detroit Tigers were anxious to get Victor Martinez back into their lineup this season after the slugger missed all of 2012 with a torn ACL. Martinez has played in six games for the Tigers this season, but he may already need to miss some game action.

This time, Martinez’s injury has nothing to do with his knee. Instead, he has been listed as day-to-day after cutting his finger on a bat rack. According to MLive.com’s James Schmehl, Martinez caught his thumb on a metal bolt on the team’s bat rack and suffered a cut that required eight stitches.

Accidents happen. Hopefully Martinez won’t have to miss much time, as it’s been a frustrating past year for him with injuries. Hey, at least the 34-year-old didn’t hurt himself in a fit of rage. We saw players miss time last year because they punched stuff not once, not twice, but three times. That’s the type of stuff that can be avoided. From the sound of it, Martinez just needs to be more careful around jagged stuff.

Jhonny Peralta scratched from Tigers lineup after allergic reaction to soup

Spring training can be a humorous time when it comes to bizarre injuries across baseball, but there is nothing funny about an allergic reaction. In terms of timing, I’m sure the Detroit Tigers are relieved that Jhonny Peralta realized he is allergic to clam chowder on March 11 rather than in October.

According to MLB.com’s Jason Beck, Peralta had to be scratched from the Tigers’ lineup on Monday after mistakenly sampling some chowder.

Jhonny-Peralta-TigersNaturally, most of the feedback on Twitter and elsewhere has centered around the issue of Peralta eating a bowl of soup without knowing what was in it. Since I have no food allergies, I’d have no problem diving right into a hot bowl of goodness and seeing what it’s all about. But if you’re allergic to shellfish or anything like that, it’s probably a good idea to ask before eating something that has a bunch of ingredients mashed into it.

Hey, it’s spring training. We’d love to tell you that Peralta is the first player to suffer a food-related injury this offseason, but he’s not the first nor the second. Sometimes that’s just the way it goes in the months of February and March.

H/T Hardball Talk

A’s OF Michael Taylor injured his finger while throwing his gum away

Michael-Taylor-AsOakland A’s outfielder Michael Taylor is currently sidelined with an injury that could only happen during spring training. According to Susan Slusser of SFGate.com, Taylor sliced his finger last week after he hit his hand on a light fixture in the team’s dugout.

We hate to ever laugh at a player’s misfortunes, but to make matters even more comical Taylor suffered the injury while attempting to throw his gum away. At 6-foot-5, the 27-year-old is walking proof that it doesn’t always pay to be tall. He has already missed a week of spring training action and cannot resume play until the cut on his pinkie heals.

Wait a minute, Taylor’s not a pitcher. You mean position players can cut their fingers when they’re throwing their candy away, too? So far this offseason, we’ve seen starting pitchers injure their back while picking up their kids and others suffer rug burn while playing with their dogs. Bizarre injuries are certainly nothing new when it comes to baseball in March, but it’s usually the pitchers who are having the bad luck. Unfortunately for Taylor, that’s not always the case.

Brewers GM Doug Melvin hospitalized after scorpion sting

Doug-Melvin-BrewersGeneral managers beware. What started out as an offseason filled with bizarre injuries to players has turned into an assault on some of the MLB’s front office guys. Milwaukee Brewers general manager Doug Melvin spent several hours in a local hospital in Arizona on Wednesday night after he was stung by a scorpion in at his condo.

According to the Journal Sentinel, Melvin said he reached down to pick up what he thought was a harmless bug with a tissue when he was stung on the middle finger of his left hand. He had actually grabbed an Arizona bark scorpion, and Melvin immediately began feeling some numbness in his arm. After Googling scorpion stings, he decided he had better take a trip to the emergency room.

“I spent three hours in an emergency room in Scottsdale,” Melvin explained on Thursday morning. “My arm is still totally numb. It stung me right through the Kleenex. My arm started swelling and then the numbness started going up my arm, like when you hit your funny bone. I was wondering if it might go all the way up my arm and go to my heart. I got nervous when it got up to my shoulder, so I went to the emergency room.

“They gave me (pain medication) and just watched me for a couple of hours. They said your vision can go blurry from that. It was more an education on it but my arm is still numb. First off, they tell you it’s not fatal. But you can have an allergic reaction to it and need an anti-venom injection.”

Talk about some scary stuff. Melvin’s scorpion sting came just days after New York Yankees GM Brian Cashman suffered this gruesome injury while skydiving, so for whatever reason the injury bug has decided to start biting (pun intended) general managers. We’ve featured a ton of weird injuries over the years here at LBS, but they typically involve players. This has to be the first time two GMs have fallen victim in the same week.

H/T Eye on Baseball